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Old 06-12-2007   #1
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Car selling woes...

Ok, so some of you may or may not know but I purchased a Rover 218vvc coupe a few weeks ago. Seemed ok at first but then became harder to start. I replaced the battery which seemed to help and then just recently replaced the sparks which also helped. I asked for advice on here and the rover-coupe.co.uk forum and the conclusion was that it could be all manor of things from damp, to sparks, to leads, to coil packs, to fuel, to low compression, to head gasket etc. So i really didnt have a definitive answer to what was up with the starting (although it never actually failed to start and would always start within a few goes of trying).

Now I sold the car via ebay listed as with a starting problem (to which the cause I dont know).

Quote Quote:
The only mechanical problem I can see with the car is that occasionally it will need use of the throttle to start it. Only seems to be on damp cold mornings so it might just be condensation on the electrics etc. However, like I say, its only occasionally and usualy starts on the first turn of the key!


I also listed the car as being sold as seen

Quote Quote:
Remember, the car is sold as seen. You bid to buy, not to have a look.


Now the guy that bought it decided to use the buy now function without so much as an email to ask about the car. He did not view the car beforehand or did not get an independant vehical inspection. He paid the 200 non refundable deposit (as requested in the description) via paypal and then came to collect a few days later. He had a look around the car, had a listen to the engine (which started first time on the key) and happily drove away 10 mins later having paid the full remaining amount in cash.

Today I come online to find this in my ebay inbox

Quote Quote:

hi there, you told me that nothing major was wrong with the car.
i have been outside for 2 hours because, i could not start the car, i contacted the rac which when they came out to me, stated that their is excessive compression problem.
i understand sold as seen, however you legally lied. i would like to sort this out peacefully, and you giving me a full refund, if this is not the case you will leave me with no option but to take you to the courts, via my solicitor.
regards mr w. gibson.
p.s i will print a copy of this letter to which i will show to my solicitor.



To which I have replied

Quote Quote:

Im sorry to hear the car has caused you problems but I did put in the auction that the car had starting problems which were intermittent. I am not a mechanic (I do know about compression testing but do not have the tools) and having not owned the car for long myself I felt no need to get a mechanic to look at the car and so had no idea why it wasnt starting correctly. Also as I told you when you collected, I had replaced the spark plugs that day (as advice from another coupe owner) and this seemed to solve the starting problem. Obviously this wasnt the main cause.

As you saw the car started fine when you came to collect it and it had never failed to start since I have owned it. Had I have know that there were any major problems with the car, i would have put them in the description. Having said that, I can only assume that the drive home from collecting may have done the damage the RAC have found? Or atleast contributed to it.

As far as I am concerned, the car started ok when you collected it (and had done since owning it apart from the odd occasion when it would require one or two tried to get it going as described in the description) and to my knowledge, had no major mechanical faults (as I am sure you found, the car drove home from collecting fine?).

At the end of the day you purchaced the car sold as seen, without viewing or getting an independant inspection and seemed quite happy to drive the car away after paying the full ammount in cash and as I have already said, there is a possiblity that the damage may have been done on the way home from collecting.
In my opinion this seems quite fair. I am not willing to offer a full refund on the car as I had no definitive answer to what was wrong with it and so sold it as seen with a starting fault. This is in no way lying to cover up a major fault as I had no real reason to suspect that the head gasket had gone (having been told it could be numerous other "common" faults with these cars and not having done a compression test myself).

It is also possible that the damage could have been done once the car had left my property. There is no evidence to suggest that he didnt rag it all the way home on the limiter and kill the engine.

So really, where do I stand on this? He says he will get his solicitor envolved but surly this being a private sale and being sold as seen without actually viewing the car, happily accepting it on collection and driving away, he has no legal stand point?

Any help appreciated
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Old 06-12-2007   #2
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Re: Car selling woes...

I don't think he has a leg to stand on, he bought it, you said there was intermittant starting problems, he knew this.

Lenny
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Old 06-12-2007   #3
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Re: Car selling woes...

I'd agree with you bushboy. You've done all you could and did a clear plain text advert. He knew what he was buying its his problem now. He should of done some research on the Kseries engine lol!.
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Last edited by ChrisUK; 06-12-2007 at 11:45.
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Old 06-12-2007   #4
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Re: Car selling woes...

Unless he can prove you knew about the compression issues (which i doubt he could) then i reckon his solicitor will probably laugh at him.
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Old 06-12-2007   #5
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Re: Car selling woes...

Here is the original description :

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...MESO:IT&ih=005
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Old 06-12-2007   #6
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Re: Car selling woes...

Quote Originally Posted by bandido41 View Post
Unless he can prove you knew about the compression issues (which i doubt he could) then i reckon his solicitor will probably laugh at him.
That is my point. I had not had the car tested for compression and so did not have a definitive answer on whether this was the problem. As already said, there are so many common faults with these engines that could stop the car from starting, I had no idea which it might be. I replaced a few bits leading upto the sparks which when replaced, the car started perfect every time without the need of the throttle (as shown when he collected it).
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Old 06-12-2007   #7
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Re: Car selling woes...

This hapend with a bike i sold, I thought it was the gear box and the block that come to pick me up (when i broke down) told me it was the gearbox, So i listed it with needing a new gearbox and as spairs or repairs, the bloke come to pick the bike up pointed some fault outs that i did not list(not knowing them) I gave him the option not to buy it but he did, The next day he sent me a pm saying the engine is fooked as he has took it aprat and it was not the gear box, He also fretend to take me to court, As it was listed as spairs or repairs and listed the best i knew of the bike he had no leg to stand and and never took me to court. for all i know he could of took it apart and played with the engine cause he changed his mind or sumat like that.

Dont really help but meh lol

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Old 06-12-2007   #8
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Re: Car selling woes...

Also to add to that we agreed i would send him £70 and he was happy with that but as soon as i put the phone down he sent my mom a pm(i was not living with her and she sold it on her ebay) slagging me off and saying he wanted £100 or else, When i found this out i thought ****** to himj and said he aint getting nuffin now.

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Old 06-12-2007   #9
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Re: Car selling woes...

Again my point exactly. Im not saying there wernt compression problems but that doesnt mean I knew about them. I dont have the tools to test for them and I didnt get a garage to do it.

But as I said, for all I know he could have ragged it all the way home and blown the gasket. The car wasnt overheating, it wasnt loosing coolant and there was no mixing of coolant or oil etc so I had no reason to suspect it whilst I owned it. Whether this is down to my sheer incompetance as a mechnic, i dont know. But ive never claimed to be one
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Old 06-12-2007   #10
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Re: Car selling woes...

You got nothing to worry about . Politcally tell him to go f**k himself
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Old 06-12-2007   #11
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Re: Car selling woes...

The onus is on the buyer in a private sale, as in caveat-emptor, (let the buyer beware), particularly as you have stated in your terms "Sold as seen". Unless you have knowingly misdescribed the car and its faults there is nothing he can do. I think has had second thoughts about buying the car and is just trying to put the frighteners on you but I would pay a quick call to your local CAB to get a definative answer on where you stand, take copies of all the correspondence with you. I would ignore anything else he says himself and would not reply to his comments because you may incriminate yourself but if a solicitor does contact you on his behalf I would advise you take professional advice. Did you get him to sign a receipt highlighting the price, known problems and stating "Otherwise Sold as seen"?


http://www.rac.co.uk/web/knowhow/buy...te_sale_rights


Similar thing happened to me a few years ago, I sold a bike to a young kid for £400, he didnt tell his parents and when he got home with they went beserk at him and spent the rest of the weekend on the phone and at my front door demanding I take it back and refund the money. Sniffing more profit I said ok....but for £300. They refused, made all sorts of threats claiming they know coppers solicitors and JPs etc who will all drop on me like ton of sh**, but it never happened.
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Last edited by sledge; 06-12-2007 at 12:16.
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Old 06-12-2007   #12
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Re: Car selling woes...

Unfortunatly we didnt exchange reciepts.. He also hasnt signed the reg documents yet (I havent had them through the post yet) but will be sending them off as soon as they arrive. This was all agreed before collection.
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Old 06-12-2007   #13
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Re: Car selling woes...

Quote Originally Posted by Bushboy View Post
Unfortunatly we didnt exchange reciepts.. He also hasnt signed the reg documents yet (I havent had them through the post yet) but will be sending them off as soon as they arrive. This was all agreed before collection.

Ahh you may have a problem there then as far as reciepts go (I though with you having so many cars you'd know this ). As for log books etc not a problem as long as you got his name and address you can fill in that send it to DVLA and send him his new keeper suppliment through the post.
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Old 06-12-2007   #14
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Re: Car selling woes...

Yes thats what im doing.

As far as reciepts go, I know I should but didnt. However it still states sold as seen on the ebay auction/advert which he bought it from. Surely ebay has some kind of legal stand point as a contract for buying (which he agreed to when he used the buy now option). Ebay are always going on about how there auctions are legally binding contracts and so surely I could use the description as a back up for being "sold as seen" with the starting problem mentioned.

To be honest, as said, he is probably having second thoughts and is only using his solicitor as a threat. If he wants to take legal action then I dont think he has a stand point and any good solicitor would refuse to take it further.
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Last edited by Bushboy; 06-12-2007 at 12:23.
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Old 06-12-2007   #15
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Re: Car selling woes...

Yeah just make sure you get a screen shot of the auction incase it goes missing .
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